• From Theodore Roosevelt to Donald Trump: Exploring the Modern Presidency With Robert Dallek

    Air Dates: August 10-16, 2020

    The history of the American presidency is full of accomplishments and compromises, successes and failures.  Robert Dallek argues that the giants from both parties in the last 120 years draw a sharp contrast with the characteristics of the Trump presidency. 

    Robert Dallek is the author of several bestselling presidential histories, including “Nixon and Kissinger: Partners in Power; An Unfinished Life: John F. Kennedy, 1917–1963,” and the classic two-volume biography of Lyndon Johnson, “Lone Star Rising” and “Flawed Giant.”  His latest book is “How Did We Get Here? From Theodore Roosevelt to Donald Trump.”  Dallek has taught at Columbia, Oxford, UCLA, Boston University, and Dartmouth, and has won the Bancroft Prize, among numerous other awards for scholarship and teaching.

    On this episode of “Story in the Public Square,” Dallek describes Donald Trump’s presidential election as “a departure from what we traditionally saw in American politics,” referring to Donald Trump’s lack of prior experience with public service.  He said it prompted his exploration of past presidencies and the evolution of public sentiment that facilitated Donald Trump’s rise to the presidency. 

    “Story in the Public Square” broadcasts each week on public television stations across the United States. A full listing of the national television distribution is available at this link. In Rhode Island and southeastern New England, the show is broadcast on Rhode Island PBS on Sundays at 11 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs Saturdays at 8:30 a.m. & 6:30 p.m. ET, Sundays at 3:30 a.m. & 11:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124. “Story in the Public Square” is a partnership between the Pell Center and The Providence Journal. The initiative aims to study, celebrate and tell stories that matter.

  • The Reign Beauty Pageants in America With Hillary Levey Friedman

    Air Dates: August 3-9, 2020

    Whether you love them or hate them, beauty pageants continue to play a significant role in American popular culture.  Hillary Levey Friedman argues that their evolution is wrapped up in the history of feminism in the United States. 

    Hilary Levey Friedman is a sociologist and expert on beauty pageants, childhood and parenting, competitive afterschool activities, and popular culture.  She is Visiting Assistant Professor of Education at Brown University.  Her new book, “Here She Is: The Complicated Reign of the Beauty Pageant in America, uses beauty pageants to trace the arc of American feminism from the 1840s to the present.  Her first book, “Playing to Win: Raising Children in a Competitive Culture,” followed families with elementary school-age children involved in chess, dance, and soccer covering the history of the activities, what they mean to parents and children, and implications for inequality and gender in the educational system.  Levey Friedman is the President of the Rhode Island chapter of the National Organization for Women (RI NOW).  She also serves on the Public Policy Committee of the United Way of Rhode Island and is a volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA).  She holds degrees from Harvard University, Princeton University, and the University of Cambridge. 

    On this episode of “Story in the Public Square,” Leavy Friedman explores the American beauty pageant’s historic ties to feminism, linking the sashes worn in pageants to the banners that read “votes for women” worn by suffragettes in parades and at public events.  She says, “the sash was co-opted by beauty pageants to show this new phase of women in the public sphere.”  Leavy Friedman goes on to note the “muddled” messaging about women in society surrounding the pageants today.

    “Story in the Public Square” broadcasts each week on public television stations across the United States. A full listing of the national television distribution is available at this link. In Rhode Island and southeastern New England, the show is broadcast on Rhode Island PBS on Sundays at 11 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs 8:30 a.m. & 6:30 p.m. ET, Sundays at 4:30 a.m. & 11:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124. “Story in the Public Square” is a partnership between the Pell Center and The Providence Journal. The initiative aims to study, celebrate and tell stories that matter.

  • Pell Center to Debut Virtual Cybersecurity Training at IRS Nationwide Tax Forum

    Newport, RI—For the third-consecutive year, the Pell Center will provide cybersecurity awareness training for tax preparation professionals at the annual IRS Nationwide Tax Forum–this year, in an advanced virtual session on the most pressing cyber threats to both individual tax preparers as well as small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) in the tax industry. The Pell Center’s presentations are made possible by a generous grant by the American Coalition for Taxpayer Rights (ACTR).  Pell Center Senior Fellow Francesca Spidalieri and Linn Freedman, Chair of the Data Privacy & Cybersecurity Team and Partner at Robinson&Cole, developed the material to help sensitize tax preparation professionals to the most common cyber threats and vulnerabilities in the tax industry and provide strategies and tools to prevent data theft and lessen the likelihood that their businesses will be impacted by other cybercrimes. 

    The coronavirus prompted the Pell Center to quickly adapt its trainings to be held virtually beginning July 28, 2020.  As Senior Fellow Francesca Spidalieri said “the Internet has become the channel for effective human interaction and the primary way we work, connect, and conduct business. Attackers are taking advantage of our increased reliance on digital tools and broader exposure to cyber risks to ramp up schemes to defraud businesses, credulous consumers, and governments at all levels. As cyber criminals continue to evolve their tactics and target individual tax preparation professionals and other SMBs in the tax industry—often considered the “low hanging fruit”—the training we offer is more important than ever to protect taxpayers and strengthen the integrity of the U.S. tax system as a whole.”

    Linn Freedman added that, “tax professionals are prime targets for identity thieves and their clients’ information, including bank and investment accounts, social security numbers, health insurance records, can be a virtual goldmine in the wrong hands. That’s why securing it against a data breach is critical to protect their clients and their business.”

    Past Pell Center cybersecurity seminars hosted at Salve Regina University for tax preparers and CPAs and the ACTR-funded trainings at the annual IRS Tax Forums have been integral contributors to the dramatic reduction in fraudulent tax returns.  Recent data published by the IRS shows that successful public-private partnerships between government tax agencies and private-sector partners have resulted in a reduction of “the number of taxpayers filing affidavits to report [identity theft by] 80%,” and a decline in “the number of confirmed false-identity returns by 68%.”

    The Pell Center’s virtual trainings for tax preparers, both the basic session and the new advanced session are available on the IRS Cybersecurity for Tax Professionals page

  • Appreciating the Obituary with Mo Rocca

    Air Dates: July 27-August 2, 2020

    There are some really great dead people.  Mo Rocca helps us remember them in part through his own appreciation of the obituary. 

    Humorist, journalist and actor Mo Rocca is best known for his off-beat news reports and satirical commentary.  He is a correspondent for CBS Sunday Morning, Rocca and the host of CBS’s series The Henry Ford’s Innovation Nation.  The show features stories about some of the world’s greatest inventions—past and present—and the effort it took to create them, educating and inspiring audiences with stories of creativity, hard work, and passion.  Rocca created and hosted the Cooking Channel’s show, My Grandmother’s Ravioli, in which he learned to cook from grandparents across America.  He is also a frequent panelist on NPR’s hit weekly quiz show Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me!

    On this episode of “Story in the Public Square,” Rocca describes his book, “Mobituaries,” as his “appreciation for someone or something, that didn’t get the send-off it deserved the first time around or any send-off at all.”  He adds, “any good obit writer will tell you that a good obituary is really about someone’s life, not their death.”

    “Story in the Public Square” broadcasts each week on public television stations across the United States. A full listing of the national television distribution is available at this link. In Rhode Island and southeastern New England, the show is broadcast on Rhode Island PBS on Sundays at 11 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs 8:30 a.m. & 6:30 p.m. ET, Sundays at 4:30 a.m. & 11:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124. “Story in the Public Square” is a partnership between the Pell Center and The Providence Journal. The initiative aims to study, celebrate and tell stories that matter.

  • Public Health and Native Populations with Donald Warne

    Air Dates: July 20-26, 2020

    The coronavirus pandemic has affected some communities worse than others—drawing into specific relief decades of data on health disparities.  Dr. Donald Warne warns that the impact has been particularly grave for Native Americans. 

    Donald Warne, MD, MPH is the Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion as well as the Director of the Indians Into Medicine (INMED) and Master of Public Health Programs, and Professor of Family and Community Medicine at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences at the University of North Dakota.  He also serves as the Senior Policy Advisor to the Great Plains Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board in Rapid City, South Dakota.  Warne is a member of the Oglala Lakota tribe from Pine Ridge, South Dakota and comes from a long line of traditional healers and medicine men.  He received his medical degree from Stanford University School of Medicine and his master’s in public health from Harvard School of Public Health.  He has been a primary care physician with the Gila River Health Care Corporation in Arizona, a Staff Clinician with the National Institutes of Health, Indian Legal Program Faculty with the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University, the Health Policy Research Director for Inter-Tribal Council of Arizona, the Executive Director of the Great Plains Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board and Chair of the Department of Public Health at North Dakota State University.

    On this episode of “Story in the Public Square,” Warne describes the long-existing public health issues facing Native populations in the United States.  He cites historical issues, modern day policy issues, and existing health disparities as factors that make up the “negative synergy” that results in “the terrible, really third-world health conditions indigenous people face in the United States.” Warne added that the lack of public health infrastructure left native populations largely unprepared to meet the demands of the coronavirus pandemic.

    “Story in the Public Square” broadcasts each week on public television stations across the United States. A full listing of the national television distribution is available at this link. In Rhode Island and southeastern New England, the show is broadcast on Rhode Island PBS on Sundays at 11 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs 8:30 a.m. & 6:30 p.m. ET, Sundays at 4:30 a.m. & 11:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124. “Story in the Public Square” is a partnership between the Pell Center and The Providence Journal. The initiative aims to study, celebrate and tell stories that matter.

  • Capturing Images of the Era with Maddie McGarvey

    Air Dates: July 13-19, 2020

    A lot of Americans feel like the 2020s have already been a grueling decade—and we’re barely half-way through the first year of it.  While the narrative of this experience will take some time to be written, Maddie McGarvey is among the photo journalists already capturing the images of this era and beginning to tell those stories.

    McGarvey is a freelance photographer based in Columbus, Ohio. She worked as a staff photographer at the Burlington Free Press in Vermont before returning to the Midwest. She was named an Emerging Talent for Getty Reportage and selected as one of Magnum’s 30 Photographers under 30 and was chosen as one of TIME Magazine’s 51 Instagram Photographers to follow in the United States and was recognized by Picture of the Year International for her campaign work.  She frequently photographs for The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Time, National Geographic, Rolling Stone, AARP, NPR, and ESPN.  Her work has also appeared in Mother Jones Magazine, The New Republic, The New York Times Magazine, and FiveThirtyEight, among others.

    On this episode of “Story in the Public Square,” McGarvey discusses how her approach to photography has changed during the coronavirus pandemic.  She said, “safety is most important,” describing photographing from a distance and the protective equipment she now wears on the job.  “It really has changed the way I went to work, but I know it’s not going to be forever.”  For her subject matter, she says, “I’m photographing how this has affected other parts of our society,” describing her work photographing people facing eviction to those who were already struggling with homelessness and food insecurity. 

    “Story in the Public Square” broadcasts each week on public television stations across the United States. A full listing of the national television distribution is available at this link. In Rhode Island and southeastern New England, the show is broadcast on Rhode Island PBS on Sundays at 11 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs 8:30 a.m. & 6:30 p.m. ET, Sundays at 4:30 a.m. & 11:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124. “Story in the Public Square” is a partnership between the Pell Center and The Providence Journal. The initiative aims to study, celebrate and tell stories that matter.

  • 45 Rhode Island Students Awarded Pell Medal for Excellence in U.S. History.

    Newport, R.I. — Forty-five students from across Rhode Island have earned the Herbert and Claiborne Pell Medal for U.S. History this year. The award was originally presented by Senator Claiborne Pell and his wife, Mrs. Nuala Pell, recognizes college and high school students in the state who have excelled in U.S. History.

    “The Pell Center at Salve Regina University is proud to honor outstanding students of American history in Rhode Island,” said Pell Center Executive Director, Dr. Jim Ludes. “Now more than ever, we need to look at history with clear eyes and understanding about our republic, its founding principles, and those examples of both when we lived up to those ideals, and when we have not.”

    Established by the Pell family, the Pell Medal is named for Representative Herbert C. Pell and his son, Senator Claiborne Pell. Herbert Pell served as a member of Congress and American Minister to Portugal and Hungary, while Claiborne Pell, who is responsible for the creation of the Pell Grants and the National Endowment for the Humanities, served in the Senate for 36 years and worked to strengthen American foreign policy. The medal, which features a pelican on the left side and an anchor on the right, symbolizes the Pell family and the state of Rhode Island. 

    The winners of the 2020 Herbert and Claiborne Pell Medal for excellence in the study of U.S. History are:

    Barrington    

    Lorelei Alverson, Barrington High School

    Ethan Ciak, St. Andrew’s School

    Bristol

    Robert O’Dell, Roger Williams University

    Central Falls

    Lorraine Quintero, Central Falls High School

    Coventry       

    Alexander Lavoie, Coventry High School

    Cranston       

    Maura Potter, Cranston High School East

    Cumberland 

    John Ayick, Cumberland High School

    East Greenwich        

    Jordan Kalinsky, East Greenwich High School

    East Providence       

    Jacob Rivet, Providence Country Day School

    Alexis Silva, East Providence High School

    Harrisville    

    Hannah Eaton, Burrillville High School

    Johnston       

    Madisyn Turcotte, Johnston Senior High School

    Kingston       

    Cameron W. Garvey, University of Rhode Island

    Lincoln          

    Alec Buffi, Community College of Rhode Island

    Nathan Surmeian, Lincoln High School

    Nicholas Croce, William M. Davies, Jr. Career and Technical High School

    Narragansett

    Alison McCadden, Narragansett High School

    Newport

    Cailin Martin, Rogers High School

    North Kingstown     

    Alaina Minarik, North Kingstown High School

    North Providence     

    Nicholas Barrow, North Providence High School

    Pawtucket     

    Erick Luciano, Blackstone Academy Charter School

    Pawtucket     

    Enrique Echervarria, William E. Tolman High School

    Daniel Soares, Shea High School

    Portsmouth   

    Ava Park, Portsmouth Abbey School

    Providence    

    Christopher Azar, La Salle Academy

    Amarylis Cruz, Paul Cuffee Upper School

    Nicholas Dwyer, Rhode Island College

    Grace Jordan, Classical High School

    Rachel Lynch, Providence College

    Leah Marchant, Rhode Island School of Design

    Dewa Putra, Central High School

    Xander Schenck, School One

    Kobii Spruill, Lincoln School

    Leah Tabor, Scituate High School

    Smithfield     

    Connor Henderson, Bryant University

    Tiverton        

    Angelin Santerre, Tiverton High School

    Warwick       

    Charlotte Frost, Pilgrim High School

    Michael Graves, Toll Gate High School

    Noah Sullivan, Bishop Hendricken High School

    West Warwick          

    Grant Black, West Warwick High School

    Westerly

    Sean Rafferty, Westerly High School

    Wood River Junction          

    Andrew Poirier, Chariho High School

    Woonsocket

    Ajiehume Ceesay, Woonsocket High School

    Crickett Fisher, Beacon Charter High School for the Arts

    Everett Misto, Mount Saint Charles Academy

  • Race and the NFL with Ken Belson

    Air Dates: July 6-12, 2020

    Sports play a giant role in American public life—and their absence has been a much-discussed part of the pandemic.  Ken Belson covers the National Football League for The New York Times

    Belson writes about teams, stadiums, medical issues, lawsuits and more in his coverage of the National Football League (NFL) for The Times.  Mr. Belson joined the Sports section in 2009 after spending three years writing for the Metro and Business sections.  From 2001 to 2004, he wrote about business in Japan while working in The New York Times’ Tokyo bureau.  Prior to joining The Times, Belson wrote for Bloomberg, Reuters and Business Week, all in Tokyo, and many other publications as a freelancer.  He is the co-author of “Hello Kitty: The Remarkable Story of Sanrio and the Billion Dollar Feline Phenomenon.”  He attended Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism on a Japan-America Friendship Commission Fellowship and won the Pulitzer Traveling Scholarship, which he used to travel to the Cook Islands to write about the effects of bankruptcy on a country.

    On this episode of “Story in the Public Square,” Belson discusses race in the NFL, saying Roger Goodell’s statement in response to George Floyd’s murder was intended to set the tone for team owners to do the same.  He said many in the league, including head coaches, are “baring their souls in ways that were not [previously] the typical NFL, tough exterior, manly message that you often get,” saying recent events have prompted extensive “soul searching by some of the most powerful people in the league.”

    “Story in the Public Square” broadcasts each week on public television stations across the United States. A full listing of the national television distribution is available at this link. In Rhode Island and southeastern New England, the show is broadcast on Rhode Island PBS on Sundays at 11 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs 8:30 a.m. & 6:30 p.m. ET, Sundays at 4:30 a.m. & 11:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124. “Story in the Public Square” is a partnership between the Pell Center and The Providence Journal. The initiative aims to study, celebrate and tell stories that matter.

  • The Future of Defense and Technology with P. W. Singer and August Cole

    Air Dates: June 29-July 5, 2020

    A treatise on the future of technology and security usually is thick and often inaccessible, but P.W. Singer and August Cole turn their expertise on emerging technology and national security into a page-turning techno-thriller set in the not-too-distant future. 

    August Cole and Dr. Peter W. Singer are co-authors of the best-seller “Ghost Fleet: A Novel of the Next World War” and “Burn In: A Novel of the Real Robot Revolution.”  Cole is an author exploring the future of conflict through fiction and has reported on defense for The Wall Street Journal and MarketWatch.com among others.  He is a non-resident senior fellow at the Brent Scowcroft Center on Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council, where he directed the Art of the Future Project, which explores creative and narrative works for insight into the future of conflict, from its inception in 2014 through 2017.  Cole works on creative futures at SparkCognition, an artificial intelligence company and is a regular speaker to private sector, academic and U.S. and allied government audiences.

    Singer is a strategist at New America.  He has been named by the Smithsonian as one of the nation’s 100 leading innovators, by Defense News as one of the 100 most influential people in defense issues, by Foreign Policy to their Top 100 Global Thinkers List, and as an official “Mad Scientist” for the U.S. Army’s Training and Doctrine Command.  Singer is the author of multiple best-selling, award winning books in both fiction and nonfiction, including “Wired for War.”  Singer is considered one of the world’s leading experts on changes in 21st-century warfare, with more books on the military professional reading lists than any other author in history.  He served as coordinator of the Obama campaign’s defense policy task force and was named to the U.S. Military’s Transformation Advisory Group, NATO’s Innovation Advisory Board.  In addition to his work on conflict issues, Singer served as a member of the State Department’s Advisory Committee on International Communications and Information Policy and as an advisor to IDS.

    On this episode of “Story in the Public Square,” Singer and Cole discuss what it means to live “through a new kind of industrial revolution,” as technology progresses in future years, saying by 2030, much of the disruptive and innovative technologies as they often are, will be fairly seamless and invisible.”  While Singer said their new book, “Burn In” addresses the darker side of the technological revolution, he emphasized the potential positives, describing how algorithms based on individual preferences can enhance everyday life.

    “Story in the Public Square” broadcasts each week on public television stations across the United States. A full listing of the national television distribution is available at this link. In Rhode Island and southeastern New England, the show is broadcast on Rhode Island PBS on Sundays at 11 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs 8:30 a.m. & 6:30 p.m. ET, Sundays at 4:30 a.m. & 11:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124. “Story in the Public Square” is a partnership between the Pell Center and The Providence Journal. The initiative aims to study, celebrate and tell stories that matter.

  • Modern Fables with Karey Kirkpatrick

    Air Dates: June 22-28, 2020

    Fables are ancient tools for delivering big lessons to human audiences.  In his work, Karey Kirkpatrick applies modern story-telling technology to this ancient tradition. 

    Kirkpatrick is a writer, director, composer and lyricist whose films include “Chicken Run,” “Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy” “James and the Giant Peach,” “Over the Hedge” “Charlotte’s Web,” and the 2018 animated musical “Smallfoot” among others.  He and his brother, Wayne Kirkpatrick, were nominated for a 2015 Tony Award for Best Original Score for “Something Rotten!”  This was just one of many honors for Kirkpatrick, who has won four Annie Awards for television and movie animation.  He has also won a Saturn Award, a Hugo Award, and a Cannes Film Festival Award, among others.  He directed the computer-animated feature films “Over the Hedge” and “Smallfoot,” from Warner Bros., and co-wrote the story and screenplay, and his brother Wayne, wrote the songs. “Smallfoot” featured the voices of Channing Tatum, Zendaya, James Corden, LeBron James, and Danny DeVito among others.

    On this episode of “Story in the Public Square,” Kirkpatrick describes drawing inspiration for his work from events taking place around him. As a creator, he said, “whatever world you’re living in, living in and [whatever is] going on in the world, it’s impossible for you to not have feelings and thoughts about them. And it’s almost impossible for them to not kind of leak in to whatever it is that you’re creating.”

    “Story in the Public Square” broadcasts each week on public television stations across the United States. A full listing of the national television distribution is available at this link. In Rhode Island and southeastern New England, the show is broadcast on Rhode Island PBS on Sundays at 11 a.m. and is rebroadcast Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. An audio version of the program airs 8:30 a.m. & 6:30 p.m. ET, Sundays at 4:30 a.m. & 11:30 p.m. ET on SiriusXM’s popular P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of the United States), channel 124. “Story in the Public Square” is a partnership between the Pell Center and The Providence Journal. The initiative aims to study, celebrate and tell stories that matter.